Does Pregnancy Hike Breast Cancer Risk?

Wednesday, 04 Dec 2013 11:10 AM

By Peter Hibberd, M.D.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Question: Do you believe there could be any link between breast cancer and miscarriage or abortion? I ask because I know pregnancy changes breast tissue, and an abrupt change can leave it more vulnerable to cancer.

Dr. Hibberd's answer:
 
There is no increased risk of cancer when women have miscarriages or abortions. In fact, pregnancy actually decreases the risk of certain types of breast cancer. For example, a woman who is 20 years old or younger who carries a pregnancy to term will have half the breast cancer risk of a woman who waits until she is over 30 to carry her first child to term.
 
You are, however, correct in your concern that pregnancy changes breast tissue, because we have seen a short-term increase in breast cancer risk in women who have recently given birth. But that disappears within 10 years of childbirth. This is believed to be related to an amplifying effect that high levels of hormones have on breast tissue that was most likely affected with a microscopic cancer before the pregnancy.  
 
This is likely the same mechanism that provides a slightly higher breast cancer risk for those on birth control pills, whose risk is increased even more by smoking.

© 2014 NewsmaxHealth. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
You May Also Like
More
Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved